PARIS – President of France Emmanuel Macron said that it was necessary to clarify the issue of the European perspective for the countries of the Western Balkans, and announced the holding of a conference dedicated to this region in June next year, Radio Free Europe reports.
Macron spoke yesterday at a press conference about the priorities of the French presidency of the European Union (EU), which begins on 1 January.
He assessed that the Western Balkans is more than Europe’s neighborhood, because it is “in the heart of Europe”.
“That region is going through new tensions today. History is coming back. Sometimes tragedy is coming back. Today we have a special responsibility towards the Western Balkans,” said French President Emmanuel Macron, RFE reports.
He explained that the EU should pursue a policy of re-engagement, but also investment in order to “favor the economic integration of the region; develop human exchange, raise the issue of minorities present in the region, but also fight against influence and manipulation who want to destabilise Europe through the Balkans”.
“I believe that this political and economic work towards the Western Balkans is a real sovereignty agenda for our Europe because we cannot build a peaceful Europe in the next 50 years if we leave the Western Balkans in the current situation. That means clarifying its European perspective, reinvesting to the region and its unity and to have a common ambition for the decades to come”, Macron, who is facing re-election in April, said.